Police Community Support Officer (PCSO) Chris Ball has paid a visit to the Deaf Academy in Exmouth, interacting with the young students.

PCSO Ball, along with his fellow officers Karen Capey and Colin Balch, spoke with students, answering their queries and showcasing police uniforms and a police vehicle.

The young students of the academy even had a chance to get their fingerprints taken - just for fun.

PCSO Ball, who has attained level one in British Sign Language proficiency, is keen to progress to level two to improve communication with the academy students.

He is a familiar face at the academy's two sites and drops in to speak to students, giving them that chance to ask about anything they would like to know.

The officer, who has been in his role for 16 years, said: “We try to reach out and engage with all members of our community to offer a good service.

“My regular visits usually involve lots of questions from the students around policing and what we do. I also give regular talks to students at the academy, the last one was about mental health and how best to manage it.

“The Deaf Academy is an amazing purpose-built site and I am really honoured to be a part of the team. I am made to feel so welcome from staff and students every time I attend."

The academy currently operates from two different campuses.

Douglas Avenue, open since autumn 2020, is for under 19s and the new Fearnside campus at Long Causeway accommodates those who are over 19.

Aside from his association with the Deaf Academy, PCSO Ball and his colleagues hold routine police surgeries as a part of Exmouth Neighbourhood Police Team's activities.

These surgeries aim to open dialogue channels between locals and law enforcement, allowing for discussions on community concerns and issues.

The next police surgery will take place at Exmouth Library on Exeter Road between 11am and 12pm on December 14.

Surgeries are also conducted at other locations such as Open Door in Church Street and Heron Senior Support Services in The Parade, Exmouth.

All residents are invited to pop along to the events and speak to the officers.

Updates on similar events can be found by following Exmouth Police on Facebook and more information about the local police team can be found on www.devon-cornwall.police.uk.